Reinhardt: Repealing reform could be healthy

Healthcare economist Uwe Reinhardt believes repealing healthcare reform might be a healthy process, he said in an interview with the Fiscal Times.

Reinhardt, the James Madison professor of political economy at Princeton University, contends that a repeal of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act would actually put pressure on congressional Republicans to come up with an alternative.

"You could say, 'Okay guys, now the show is yours. Tell us what you're going to do. Here's a waitress, she's got kids, she can't afford insurance. What are you going to do about her?' And I think it would be a healthy thing to see happen," Reinhardt told TFT, adding that President Obama should not veto such a repeal.

Reinhardt criticized the bill for not having much in the way of cost controls, calling them a "wing and a prayer."

And while Reinhardt supports a theoretical move toward appeal, he also believes government payers have a much better grip on cost controls than the private sector.

"The public sector can just put a lid on it and say, 'That's all we're paying.' The private sector is the inflationary component of healthcare, not Medicare or Medicaid," he said. "Medicare and Medicaid haven't grown faster, even though they deal with the older population. It's the private sector that doesn't know how to control costs."

For more:
- read the Fiscal Times article
- read Reinhardt's opinion piece on healthcare reform